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Old 03-03-2015, 06:12 AM   #1
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Independent Rear Suspension.... not that great.

Besides styling, the big attraction to the 2015 Mustang was the fact that it has independent rear suspension. I thought that was an improvement over the previous live rear axle Mustangs. After reading an article, I'm not so sure. Here is part of that article...........


Independent suspension:
Pros:
-Typically better track performance since it results in less wheel hop and more even traction and weight-distribution during turns.
-Smoother ride

Cons:
-More drivetrain power loss. It's simple physics. Every time the rotational power is transferred through a driveshaft, changed direction through a differential, or a universal joint, none of those are "free." There is always a loss of energy. In a live or solid rear axle, you lose some power at the first universal joint before the driveshaft, a little bit at the driveshaft, a little at the rear universal joint, then a significant amount through the rear differential, and then a little bit in the rear axles. With an independent rear suspension, you have all of those losses but add FOUR more universal joints, 2 at each rear axle (one before and one after each rear axle). So you end up with less power to the wheels.
-While it is better for track racing, it is worse for drag racing. Solid axles typically perform better on the straight.

So given these pros and cons, this is how I see it affects the Ford Mustang. If you're a fan of the car, you'd be familiar with the fact that the latest version of the Mustang with the live rear axle actually performed very well on the track. The 2013 Mustang GT matches a $80k BMW M3 on the track. A 2013 Mustang Boss 302 BEATS a $100k Audi R8 on the track.

So in my opinion, Ford managed to make a solid rear axle car with the track performance of an independent rear axle car but maintaining the power of a solid rear axle. Basically almost the best of both worlds. And then as an icing on the cake, it maintained the straight drag racing performance as well. And honestly, you get to use straight line acceleration a whole lot more in your every day driving than track driving.

So basically, while the world is generally praising the idea of the Mustang gaining an independent rear suspension, I am on the other side of the fence. I feel that it will give only a marginal improvement on the track but could have a detrimental effect on drag racing and on overall power transfer from the engine to the wheels.

So if there are any other car enthusiasts out there, what are your opinions?
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Old 03-03-2015, 07:58 AM   #2
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Most people that have these will never race it, and the IRS means better daily ride comfort, which, let's face it, is what most consumers want. So Ford had to put it in. Ford almost put it in the S197.
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Old 03-03-2015, 08:20 AM   #3
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This was a huge debate back when ford took the 2001-2004 cobra to an IRS set up. Only difference there is that it was easily swapped out since they still made that same car with a solid axle.

I see all your points, but I think it had to evolve to survive. The amount of people buying these cars to drag race is minimal. Those people will find some aftermarket way to retrofit the car with mods to minimize the effects or do solid axle swaps if possible.

The majority of people want to have a nice sporty fast when they want it, comfortable when they need it car. I personally wish my 14 had IRS. I think the only type of track fun I will do is maybe an occasional road course. I'm not a drag racer. I like to drive mine daily through the turns like a mad man. It's just fun. Anyone can go fast in a straight line. I just don't see the fun in that. Obviously that's my opinion. Lots of people do.

The mustang has only lived 50 years because it has adapted to the market around it while staying as true to the spirit as possible. How many times have you looked at a new model and thought "what were they thinking", only to have it grow on you in a short time? I know the S550 has done that with many. I didn't like the styling at first. But it's growing on me. Even the 13-14 when first introduced I thought ohh man that front end is a little strange...now I own one and love it.

I think the IRS will do this with many. I don't think the average person will notice the negatives you pointed out. But they will notice the pros. This is why ford had to do this. It was time.
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Old 03-03-2015, 08:57 AM   #4
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IRS is over rated. in motocross, if an atv racer showed up to the race with IRS on his quad, he would get laughed off the track. and moto is way more demanding on suspension than driving around on flat pavement. gimme a break
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Old 03-03-2015, 09:01 AM   #5
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Old 03-03-2015, 09:55 AM   #6
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So OP you are basing this off reading an article?

I can base a lot of stuff off reading an article lol


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Old 03-03-2015, 09:56 AM   #7
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Independent Rear Suspension.... not that great.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Panther140 View Post
IRS is over rated. in motocross, if an atv racer showed up to the race with IRS on his quad, he would get laughed off the track. and moto is way more demanding on suspension than driving around on flat pavement. gimme a break

Motocross and ATV racing are extremely different. Your comparison is completely irrelevant.


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Old 03-03-2015, 10:26 AM   #8
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Independent Rear Suspension.... not that great.

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Originally Posted by mustangz View Post
Here comes the storm...

Yep. Everyone has an opinion and we are about to hear them all lol.

IRS on an ATV GUY... I'm with bullitt, what the heck does that have to do with a street car? Lol. Can't remember the last time I motocrossed my stang. But noted for future reference
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Old 03-03-2015, 10:29 AM   #9
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All I know is, that there are some bumps I routinely drive over on a daily basis. With my 2013 the car would almost hop off the road-- with the 2015 I barely notice the bumps. Also, weaving on back roads the 2015 gives me more confidence.


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Old 03-03-2015, 10:47 AM   #10
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Independent Rear Suspension.... not that great.

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Originally Posted by flying dutchman View Post
All I know is, that there are some bumps I routinely drive over on a daily basis. With my 2013 the car would almost hop off the road-- with the 2015 I barely notice the bumps. Also, weaving on back roads the 2015 gives me more confidence.


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I can tell you that when I drive my 08 GT there are some bumps where the car jumps when I hit them. When I hit the same bumps with my 2012 Boss I hardly know that they are there. So it is definitely possible to get great handling with the solid axle.


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Old 03-03-2015, 12:46 PM   #11
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Old 03-03-2015, 12:52 PM   #12
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Independent Rear Suspension.... not that great.

Performance companies are already making kits for the new IRS. S550s have the same flaw the 99-04 Cobras had, with wheel hop. But like the Cobras replacing the bushings in the IRS dramatically improves it. Like the Cobras there will eventually be drag racing kits available for the S550...
Personally, I've seen that the IRS has worst wheel hop that a solid rear axel, at least in fords...


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Old 03-03-2015, 01:16 PM   #13
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CTM engineering offers a IRS for the S197, but it doesn’t come cheap:

http://mustangirs.com

I wonder how a S197 IRS would compare to the S550 IRS?


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Old 03-03-2015, 01:58 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by silverstate777 View Post
CTM engineering offers a IRS for the S197, but it doesn’t come cheap:

http://mustangirs.com

I wonder how a S197 IRS would compare to the S550 IRS?


Probably not remotely worth it
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Old 03-03-2015, 02:07 PM   #15
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The IRS would be better for road racing and this is one reason Ford changed. Camaro's and BMW's beating Mustang typically in GT classes. Live axle for drag racing and the S197 through 2014 are very popular at the drag strip. Biggest issue I have with 2015 is that its heavier. Ford should have reduced its weight, how about an aluminum body or at least a Boss 302 with and aluminum body option.
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Old 03-03-2015, 02:15 PM   #16
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Honestly the IRS in the 99-04 Cobras is really good once you install a FTBR kit and they aren't bank breaking. They make tools to remove the bushings and everything, just need a real big breaker bar and a good 4 letter vocabulary. IMO, if you can get a 99/01 Cobra for what they are really worth that is one of the best deals out there as far as a starter circle track car. Do a MM K/coilover setup up front and the FTBR kit/coilovers out back and blam.

Now... all that said... the S197 SRA setup is dirt cheap to mod, works REALLY well with minimal modding and is bulletproof. Yes the general public wants the IRS and majority rules etc... If you like the SRA better then honestly just get a mint condition 11-14 GT and roll.
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Old 03-03-2015, 03:13 PM   #17
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Strange... Nobody in NASCAR is using an IRS. And there are no Formula 1 cars that use a SRA.

IRS isn't really necessary on smooth pavement. It does provide better handling and ride quality on bumpy surfaces though.
That's why SRA's have been able to compete so well on the race track. Unlike public roads, most racing surfaces are reasonably well maintained.
Ford must have decided to install the IRS based solely upon ride quality. They know, as well as the rest of us, that there is a sizeable weight penalty with the IRS as compared to the lighter SRA. Kind of surprising in an era of aluminum bodied pickups!

SL4 and some of the other guys on here, and I, are going to have an opportunity to try out the new IRS, on an autocross course, in a couple of months. It has been so long since i have driven an IRS, rear wheel drive car, agressively, that i cant even remember what it's like! It will be interesting to see if there is a noticeable difference in handling.
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Old 03-03-2015, 04:23 PM   #18
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IRS is over rated. in motocross, if an atv racer showed up to the race with IRS on his quad, he would get laughed off the track. and moto is way more demanding on suspension than driving around on flat pavement. gimme a break
I never got laughed off the track when I raced my friends Polaris Outlaw 525 in the open sport class. I finished 1st in class. Most people came up asking how it was and how it handled. It was so much smoother than the solid axle quads, even with $3,000 in suspension, a solid axle quad wasn't as smooth at the Outlaws IRS setup. Also, I was much less fatigued during the race than I normally would be.

To be honest, I'm surprised that only Polaris and Honda ever attempted an IRS sport quad.


*Edit*

Just noticed you were talking about MX. I was talking about XC which really shows off the benefits of the IRS.

For MX, a solid axle quad is where it's at. To much body roll on IRS quads, sport or utility.
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Old 03-03-2015, 04:45 PM   #19
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I never got laughed off the track when I raced my friends Polaris Outlaw 525 in the open sport class. I finished 1st in class. Most people came up asking how it was and how it handled. It was so much smoother than the solid axle quads, even with $3,000 in suspension, a solid axle quad wasn't as smooth at the Outlaws IRS setup. Also, I was much less fatigued during the race than I normally would be.

To be honest, I'm surprised that only Polaris and Honda ever attempted an IRS sport quad.


*Edit*

Just noticed you were talking about MX. I was talking about XC which really shows off the benefits of the IRS.

For MX, a solid axle quad is where it's at. To much body roll on IRS quads, sport or utility.
Yeah XC when you are dealing with rocks and **** like that, the IRS isn't bad at all. IRS on a moto track and you're at a disadvantage. It wallows around like ****
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Old 03-03-2015, 04:59 PM   #20
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Strange... Nobody in NASCAR is using an IRS. And there are no Formula 1 cars that use a SRA.



IRS isn't really necessary on smooth pavement. It does provide better handling and ride quality on bumpy surfaces though.

That's why SRA's have been able to compete so well on the race track. Unlike public roads, most racing surfaces are reasonably well maintained.

Ford must have decided to install the IRS based solely upon ride quality. They know, as well as the rest of us, that there is a sizeable weight penalty with the IRS as compared to the lighter SRA. Kind of surprising in an era of aluminum bodied pickups!



SL4 and some of the other guys on here, and I, are going to have an opportunity to try out the new IRS, on an autocross course, in a couple of months. It has been so long since i have driven an IRS, rear wheel drive car, agressively, that i cant even remember what it's like! It will be interesting to see if there is a noticeable difference in handling.

Let's face it. Since Nascar only goes in ovals they could use a solid front axle and be fine LOL.

You can be sure as hell when we go to that Ecoboost challenge I'll push those cars to the limit


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Old 03-03-2015, 05:04 PM   #21
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Let's face it. Since Nascar only goes in ovals they could use a solid front axle and be fine LOL.

You can be sure as hell when we go to that Ecoboost challenge I'll push those cars to the limit


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NASCAR does a few road courses every season as well.
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Old 03-03-2015, 05:05 PM   #22
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Let's face it. Since Nascar only goes in ovals they could use a solid front axle and be fine LOL.

You can be sure as hell when we go to that Ecoboost challenge I'll push those cars to the limit


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They run road courses too!


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Old 03-03-2015, 05:08 PM   #23
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They run road courses too!


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That sounds like a terrible idea...


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Old 03-03-2015, 05:11 PM   #24
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Independent Rear Suspension.... not that great.

2-3 road courses. Everything else is ovals

PS........ I attended a Nascar race at Sonoma and plan on racing there myself this year. It's 45 minutes from me.


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Old 03-03-2015, 05:14 PM   #25
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2-3 road courses. Everything else is ovals

PS........ I attended a Nascar race at Sonoma and plan on racing there myself this year. It's 45 minutes from me.


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Racing at Sonoma should be a blast!


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Old 03-03-2015, 05:20 PM   #26
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That sounds like a terrible idea...


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Lol
The cars are setup completely different to run on the road courses. As a matter of fact, most teams have different cars that they use strictly for the road races.
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Old 03-03-2015, 05:24 PM   #27
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Lol

The cars are setup completely different to run on the road courses. As a matter of fact, most teams have different cars that they use strictly for the road races.

I wonder if NASCAR runs like a Watts link setup on road course?


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Old 03-03-2015, 05:24 PM   #28
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I'd be interested to see the road course races...


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Old 03-03-2015, 05:27 PM   #29
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I'd be interested to see the road course races...


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Really? Here you go.....


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Old 03-03-2015, 05:31 PM   #30
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Hm, I haven't watched nascar since Earnhardt...
I watch the classic nascar races from the 60s and 70s often...
I never liked how all the cars look the same nowadays...


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Old 03-03-2015, 05:33 PM   #31
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I wonder if NASCAR runs like a Watts link setup on road course?


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I'm not a big enough fan to know what they are typically using for suspension but the whole chassis is different for the road courses. When you are only turning left on ovals, it is advantageous to have the drive train mounted in the chassis offset to the left side of the car. They set up the road cars with the drive train in the middle.
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Old 03-03-2015, 05:52 PM   #32
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I'm not a big enough fan to know what they are typically using for suspension but the whole chassis is different for the road courses. When you are only turning left on ovals, it is advantageous to have the drive train mounted in the chassis offset to the left side of the car. They set up the road cars with the drive train in the middle.
I saw Jimmie Johnson in person at the Sonoma event and he actually explained that how everything is set up if they were to drive the car on flat ground and let go of the wheel it would immediately turn right since its set up to counteract the bank of the track.
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:01 PM   #33
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I saw Jimmie Johnson in person at the Sonoma event and he actually explained that how everything is set up if they were to drive the car on flat ground and let go of the wheel it would immediately turn right since its set up to counteract the bank of the track.
That's what I've heard as well.
A car that is properly set up to run a high-banked oval would be quite a handful to drive as a daily driver!
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:02 PM   #34
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That's what I've heard as well.
A car that is properly set up to run a high-banked oval would be quite a handful to drive as a daily driver!
You would have to be a dang good driver
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:03 PM   #35
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That's what I've heard as well.

A car that is properly set up to run a high-banked oval would be quite a handful to drive as a daily driver!

I think it's a pretty safe bet to say any race car would be a handful as a daily driver.


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